United Way of Lake County Donates Food from Today's Canceled Celebrity Server Fundraiser to Salvation Army

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United Way of Lake County Donates Food from Today’s Canceled Celebrity Server Fundraiser to the Salvation Army

In Anticipation of Growing Need due to the Coronavirus, UWLC also Asks the Community for Help Feeding those in Need

March 12, 2020 – Mentor, OH – Due to the current health climate, United Way of Lake County (UWLC) announced the postponement of their 17th Annual Celebrity Server Fundraiser yesterday. The event was scheduled to be held today from 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm at the American-Croatian Lodge in Eastlake. The organization will be donating the food that would have been served at the fundraiser to The Salvation Army of Painesville.

The Irish-themed fundraiser has been rescheduled for Wednesday, May 20th at the same time and location originally planned. It will be celebrated as “St. Patty’s Day in May.”

Nearly 500 community leaders, officials, CEO’s and businesspersons were expected to turn out in support of UWLC’s largest annual fundraiser, which raised a record-breaking $40,000 last year to benefit Lake County residents in need.

“The work we do is solely for the benefit of the Lake County community and residents. It’s my belief that given the current health climate we must all exercise an abundance of caution. This is why the decision to postpone the event was made,” said UWLC President and CEO Jennifer McCarty.  

The organization is in the midst of their 28th Annual Food Drive and Fundraiser. “The effects of the coronavirus are hitting everyone hard as many are being asked to stay home and mass gatherings are being cancelled or limited. This finds our community’s working poor in a more compromised position than normal, which is why monetary donations in support of our food drive are critical right now.”

A full 34.5% of Lake County households face barriers to self-sufficiency. These are Lake County residents who live in poverty or barely above, earning more than the federal poverty level but less than the cost of living. This percentage includes a stark 27% of households who fall into the “ALICE” threshold, a United Way acronym that stands for Asset Limited Income Constrained Employed. These are the men and women who live paycheck to paycheck and struggle to make ends meet. The consequences of insufficient household income can be devastating, especially in today’s health climate.

According to McCarty, “The Lake County community genuinely cares for one another and can always be counted on to step up and help those in need. Due to the effects of the coronavirus, this is one of those times we need everyone to open their hearts and wallets to charity. Every $5 donated is enough to provide 20 meals to someone suffering from hunger and struggling to put food on the table.”

The organization benefits from economies of scale when making purchases to help restock over 40 local Lake County food pantries. While food donations are still welcome, UWLC is encouraging monetary donations now more than ever. Donations can be made online at www.uwlc.org/feed. Checks made payable to United Way of Lake County can also be sent to United Way of Lake County to 9285 Progress Parkway, Mentor, OH, 44094.

Additional information about UWLC’s food drive and fundraiser can be found on their website at www.uwlc.org/feed, or you may contact Jodi Matsko at 440-639-1236 or via email at  jmatsko@uwlc.org.